What had I to expect after surgery?
After removal of a digital cyst, you will wear a fingersplint for some days. If a skin graft is used you will wear a finger splint for about 10 days?
After a simple excision of cysts a light gauze compression dressing and an immobilization of 3 to 4 days is sufficient.
At which time does the doctor remove the stitches?
The operation wound heals within 10 to 14 days. After this time the stitches can be removed. Generally this is a harmless doing which causes only very few pain.
Are specific exercises for the finger necessary?
Many patient need no specific exercises, because the move the finger normal within 4 to 6 weeks.
For fingerfunction the joint near the nail is not very important. More important is a painless joint and a stable grip.
Be patient after surgery! For your body removal of a digital cyst is an easy procedure…but this is not true for your finger!
Which complications are frequent?
a cyst may reappear (often within weeks or a few month)
loss of joint motion
long lasting pain in the joint (often due to osteoarthritis)
Damage of the nail matrix with permanent nail deformity.
infection of skin and joint
How does a patient note an infection?
In case of an infection the operated joint strongly hurts. Often sleep is disturbed by pain. The wound swells and turns red.
With suspicion on an infection don`t hesitate to visit a hand surgeon.
The picture shows an advanced case of an infection with escape of pus. The treatment in this case was operativ and very prolonged.
In concluding this informational paper I would like to encourage you to address all questions you may have in connection with a finger cyst (finger ganglion) with your attending physician as this document does not constitute a replacement to a personal examination or consultancy through your doctor.